Plains Apache language

The Plains Apache language (or Kiowa Apache) is a Southern Athabaskan language spoken by the Plains Apache peoples living primarily in central Oklahoma.

Plains Apache
Kiowa Apache
Native toUnited States
RegionPrimarily Oklahoma
Language codes
ISO 639-3apk

Plains Apache is most closely related to other Southern Athabaskan languages like Navajo, Chiricahua Apache, Mescalero Apache, Lipan Apache, Western Apache, and Jicarilla Apache. Plains Apache is the most divergent member of the subfamily. The language is extremely endangered with perhaps only one or two native speaking elders. Alfred Chalepah, Jr., who might have been the last native speaker, died in 2008.

See also


  1. Hammarström, Harald; Forkel, Robert; Haspelmath, Martin, eds. (2017). "Kiowa Apache". Glottolog 3.0. Jena, Germany: Max Planck Institute for the Science of Human History.


  • Bittle, William E. (n.d.). Plains Apache field notes. (Unpublished manuscript).
  • Bittle, William E. (1956). The position of Kiowa-Apache in the Apachean group. (Doctoral dissertation, University of California, Los Angeles).
  • Bittle, William E. (1963). Kiowa-Apache. In H. Hoijer (Ed.), Studies in Athabaskan languages (pp. 76–101). University of California publications in linguistics (No. 29). Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Bittle, William E. (1967). Kiowa-Apache. In H. Hoijer (Ed.), Studies in Southwestern ethnolinguistics: meaning and history in the languages of the American Southwest. Berkeley: University of California Press.
  • Bittle, William E. (1971). A brief history of the Kiowa-Apache. Oklahoma Papers in Anthropology 12(1): 1-34.
  • Bittle, William E. (1979). Kiowa Apache Raiding Behavior. Oklahoma Papers in Anthropology 20(2): 33-47.
  • Collins, Melanie Ruth. (1983). Plains Apache: Strength Relations Among the Phonological Elements in a Dying Language. MA thesis, University of Oklahoma.
  • Gatschet, Albert S. (1884). Na-isha Band, Apache (Kiowa Apache). Vocabulary and brief texts with interlinear translation November - December, 1884. Manuscript 62, National Anthropological Archives, Smithsonian Institution. Washington, DC.
  • Goddard, Pliny Earle. (1911). Field notes in California Athabascan languages. American Council of Learned Societies Committee on Native American Languages, American Philosophical Society. Philadelphia, PA.
  • Hoijer, Harry. (1971). The Position of the Apachean Languages in the Athapaskan Stock. Apachean Culture History and Ethnology, ed. by Keith H. Basso and Morris E. Opler. Anthropological Papers of the University of Arizona 21.3-6.

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